Global technology company Facebook have commissioned The Education Foundation to research and produce a major new report – the Facebook guide for educators – which launches at the Sunday Times Festival of Education at Wellington College on 21 June 2013.
This new Facebook guide for educators – the first of its kind in the UK – is the culmination of a landmark research project delivered by Co-founders of The Education Foundation Ian Fordham & Ty Goddard, with two schools, Wellington College and the London Nautical School, following a series of intensive workshops and immersion sessions at Facebook HQ, looking at the challenges and opportunities of using Facebook in the classroom. It offers insight and practical advice into how social media can support traditional classroom learning, enable ‘out of hours’ learning, facilitate communication between educators, students and parents, and enhance digital skills and citizenship.
Featuring case studies from the two schools participating in the research – as well as from educators around the country who are already successfully maximising Facebook for learning – the guide explains how teachers can use Facebook in a number of ways, including how to run projects based around Timeline, set up Groups to share resources, create Events for exams and deadlines, and enable language students to speak to peers overseas. The guide also addresses ways to overcome the challenges of using Facebook in school environments, including confronting some educators’ cautiousness about social media’s potential as a learning tool.
Launched at the Sunday Times Festival of Education on 21 June 2013, Simon Milner, Facebook’s UK and Ireland Policy Director said:
“We’ve long believed that Facebook could help people learn and we’ve been pleased to see Facebook’s positive impact in schools in this research. We hope that teachers and educators around the UK will be able to use this practical guide to help them introduce Facebook to support learning in and out of the classroom”
Ian Fordham and Ty Goddard, Co-founders of The Education Foundation and authors of the guide, said: “Facebook has the potential to be a game changer for teachers, schools and the classroom, with benefits for learning, engagement and communication. Tools such as Timeline and Groups have the potential to revolutionise the way teaching and homework is planned, completed and reported on, and it can also be a tool for teachers’ professional development, providing a safe space to share expertise and professional practice beyond the walls of the classroom.
“The digital world and social media can often be confusing and the role of teachers in helping young people understand and benefit from the resources and tools out there is of utmost importance. We hope our Facebook Guide for Educators will help many take that first step.”